Emerson Hospital

Pre-surgical Testing

When you are scheduled for surgery at Emerson Hospital, your comfort and safety are our top priorities. That is why you will undergo what is called a pre-surgical assessment. This important step ensures you are as fit as possible for surgery and anesthesia, and that our care is tailored to your unique needs.

Similarly, if your child is having surgery, a preoperative evaluation gives your child’s care team the opportunity to prepare you and your child, and ensure his or her safety.

What pre-surgical assessment involves

Here is what to expect from Emerson’s pre-surgical assessment process:

Initial phone call

Your pre-surgical assessment begins with a phone call from a nurse practitioner who will review your medical history and ask questions about the medications you’re taking, allergies, your doctors and other important health-related information.

Information gathering

When appropriate, Emerson’s pre-surgical assessment team also gathers information from your personal physicians, such as results from specialized heart tests that may already have been done. This is vital so that your surgeon and anesthesiologist thoroughly understand your medical history and current health status.

Pre-surgical testing

Depending on your specific health issues, you may need to undergo some tests in advance of your surgery. These could include laboratory tests such as blood work, or imaging such as a chest X-ray or CT scan. Our pre-surgical assessment team will arrange for and gather the results of any necessary testing.

Pre-surgical instructions

As part of your pre-op assessment, you will be given instructions about when to stop eating or drinking before surgery, whether to stop taking certain medications prior to surgery (drugs that interfere with clotting or affect your blood pressure, for example, may need to be switched or reduced before you have an operation), and other necessary information for your procedure. You will also be given information about advance directives and naming a health care proxy.

Preoperative coaching

At Emerson, we recognize that getting ready for surgery also involves lifestyle considerations, and our nurses provide practical, real-world advice so you are prepared when you are back home after surgery. From buying smaller bags of pet food because you will not be able to lift after abdominal surgery, to renting a recliner if you need to sleep sitting up for a few weeks after shoulder surgery, we will help you know what to expect—and be ready.


If you have any questions about your upcoming surgery at Emerson Hospital, we are here to provide answers.

Simply call us at 978-287-3166.